Author Archives: valpinny

Keep active

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Wednesday 25th to Friday 27th March

You’ve just got to keep active, I don’t stop!

I’m aching and exhausted!

PE with Joe Wicks on YouTube. A walk every day. And also as it’s been good weather so far, I’ve been starting to sort out my garden.

Task – to get rid of all the weeds and to put down another layer of gravel.

I’ve achieved one successful thing so far thanks to the coronavirus πŸ‘

And as for Robyn …

Click to view Robyn’s TikTok dance

Keep on going everyone πŸ™‚

#StayHome

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Monday 23rd to Tuesday 24th March

I got my text on Monday identifying me as ‘extremely vulnerable’ and at risk of severe illness.

‘Please remain at home for a minimum of 12 weeks’

Lovely!

I had another 3 texts from them on Tuesday about various things.

The country is now in a 3 week lockdown, people shouldn’t be leaving their houses unless for a really valid reason, but a lot of people don’t seem to be taking much notice of this, I think the fact that we’re having some nice weather at the moment hasn’t helped at all, and the numbers are rising πŸ˜–

Over the last week or so it has been a nightmare in our house trying to avoid touching things that Robyn and Leah have already touched as you go about your normal day. And then to avoid touching your eyes and mouth or anything else until you’ve washed your hands. You do things automatically and now we all need to stop and think.

Robyn has finished work now to reduce the risk of bringing the virus home and Leah has gone to stay with her boyfriend for a while, both to help to protect me (I feel VERY guilty and upset about this). Leah works in pharmacy so she needs to keep working throughout and is in a high risk place of possibly catching the virus as it is just so extremely busy there, constant queues, with everyone wanting to get their medications.

It’s so upsetting for us all being apart at this scary time.

They also have their dad to worry about too. He’s had a kidney transplant so they have both of their parents on the ‘extremely vulnerable’ list 😱

Go for a walk!

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Thursday 19th to Sunday 22nd March

Well. What can I say? Times are tough aren’t they?

I’m lucky that I live in a small town and have some open fields near me.

Virus free zones hopefully.

So far I’ve got myself out for a walk every day. I think it’s SO important if you can. It gets your body moving from just being around the house all the time, you get some lovely fresh air and it helps your state of mind, even though sometimes that may only be temporary 🀯 It does give you a break.

Now as some people know cooking is not my strong point. Sometimes even eating is not my favourite thing to do! But on Saturday night I cooked a curry 😱 Okay it wasn’t the most amazing thing but I quite enjoyed making it and it didn’t taste that bad either.

And then it was Mother’s Day. I was luckier than a lot of mums all over the country this year as I had my two special girlies at home to spend the day with me.

Leah cooked us all scrambled egg and yes there was another walk.

We’re being lucky with the weather at the moment, its been sunny and reasonably warm if you can stay in the sun and get out of the wind.

Day 1

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Tuesday 17th March

As I have had two liver transplants and I take medication every day to suppress my immune system so that my body doesn’t attack and reject my new liver, I am now at even higher risk of severe illness from Coronavirus (COVID-19).

I work on the checkouts in a busy supermarket. Not a great place for me to be right now I would say. I was also under strict instructions from my two daughters last night that I WAS DEFINITELY NOT allowed to go into work today.

So following government advice, today is my first day of social distancing measures.

Since first hearing about this dreaded virus I have been doing my best not to worry and to get on with my normal life. But now things are changing and yes I am scared.

This is going to be a very tough time for me to cope with, my family too and as time goes on I think all the population are going to find things getting even tougher for a while.

As it’s not recommended for me to go out myself to the shops and other public places I cannot offer my services to get people’s shopping or run other errands for them.

So I will try to help anyone that needs it through my blog, by posting information and advice, any tips I see or do myself to keep motivated and hopefully just some light-hearted fun stuff!

Or if you just need someone different to have a little chat with – then contact me πŸ˜ƒ

And just to let you know how my very first day is going so far, I made myself a nice mug of tea earlier, sat down to drink it and it was stone cold. It seems I hadn’t even boiled the kettle first!

That might explain to you my state of mind right now 🀯

Paddington Bear ❀️

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Thursday 5th to Monday 16th March

I didn’t feel well for a few days. Was a bit dizzy and wobbly!

I couldn’t seem to sleep at night at all either.

But then I had a trip to London to look forward to. Think i was running on adrenaline for that.

We arrived at Paddington Station.

‘Paddington Bear was found at the railway station by the Brown family, sitting on his suitcase with a note attached to his coat that read “Please look after this bear. Thank you.” He was sent from Peru by his Aunt Lucy.’

I used to love reading Paddington Bear when I was younger.

My very special friend Nina was taking me to see Mamma Mia! The Party πŸŽ€πŸ’ƒ

It was set in the courtyard of a Greek taverna and the singers and musicians performed the show all around the tables while you ate a four course Mediterranean meal and also joined in with the singing and dancing. It was such fun.

A look around the O2 and then a boat trip up the Thames to get back to catch our train.

A great day.

I think you could say I was pretty tired out by the end of it πŸ˜–

And no, I still didn’t sleep that night.

Then it seems that the dreaded COVID-19 (a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways which is caused by a virus called Coronavirus) started to take hold of the country.

Even the ‘zookeeper’ on Kidlington roundabout started to protect himself 😷

Good advice

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Friday 28th February to Wednesday 4th March

I had a visit to the doctor to get my arm checked out.

You can see some redness around the area of where I had cryotherapy (freezing with liquid nitrogen) to remove my solar keratoses. This is basically skin damage but does need to be checked as it can sometimes turn cancerous. Especially important for me due to the medication I have to take.

I’ve just been given some steroid cream for now. Hopefully all will be okay 🀞

I do miss my mum and dad πŸ’”

Have a read of these 11 things about you that will change when you lose your parents.

I think as time goes on, in some ways it gets much harder.

I often wonder what on earth they would think about all that I have been through πŸ€”

I also wonder what advice my mum and dad would have given if they were asked to do this …

 ‘The best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person ❀️’

FIVE YEARS!

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Friday 21st to Thursday 27th February

So this time 5 years ago my liver transplant journey started.

I got the call, I had the transplant, the liver failed, I very luckily had the second transplant.

And now 5 years have passed.

To celebrate my five years I made a little photo slideshow πŸ“½

The consultants think that my illness, Primary Biliary Cholangitis, may already be back in my new liver πŸ€” I do have times when I just don’t feel well and I still get very tired. But I have had no major setbacks during this time. I have been so very lucky and have been able to do many fun things, all thanks to my two donors and their families agreeing to organ donation.

Also to celebrate reaching 5 years I decided that I would arrange to do an organ donation awareness stand on the 27th, the anniversary of my second transplant. I did this at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford where I go to volunteer. My friend Annie came down from the ward to help me. We got a few people to sign up and explained the changes that are coming up in the Spring to others that were interested. We had a successful morning.

Then it was time to go out for some yummy food πŸ˜‹ with Robyn and Leah. And later there was cake!

Fingers crossed for another five years …

Mud

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Tuesday 18th to Thursday 20th February

Happy Birthday to me πŸŽπŸŽ‚

And what a great way to spend my day, on a very muddy and flooded five and a half mile walk in the very cold wind and heavy rain showers.

Then we came across this.

There was no other way round and we didn’t want to turn back, so we just had to wade through.

We got completely lost at one point when we were out in the fields πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ Luckily for us we eventually saw some other people in the distance so we decided to follow them which thankfully got us back onto our track.

My wellies were really not much use, they have had holes in them for ages, so basically I was just walking round with soaking wet feet and I ended up like this!

When we finally finished the walk there was a bit of a reward. I did get to have a pot of tea and a really lovely doorstep granary bread ham and cheese sandwich with a salad for my lunch which was very much needed and later on I was lucky enough to be given a chocolate caterpillar birthday cake πŸ˜‹

All of the uneven ground made it a very good workout, we were all exhausted. It really hurt my toe though (I have arthritis in my big toe joint). I could barely walk the next morning πŸ˜–

Despite the cold I still tried to take some of my artistic photos!

This walk would be great to do again on a warm sunny day, it takes you past some lovely big lakes, woodland and streams (unless it was just flooded from all this constant rain and storms we have been getting!)

I ❀️ segwaying!

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Monday 10th to Monday 17th February

Happy Birthday to my brother 🍻

And Happy 60th Birthday to my sister πŸ₯‚

This means it was time for an adventure!

We were going on a Segway.

A bit scary at first, how on earth are we going to do this we all thought, but surprisingly after our training we all got used to it (some better than others!) and off we all went, down the lane, through the farm yard and across the fields, through very uneven and muddy ditches and big muddy puddles. As I got more used to it I absolutely loved it. I was frozen right through to the bone and shivering throughout as it was such a cold and windy day, especially out in the open fields, but it was such good fun.

There was time for fizz 🍾

We went to a casino in the evening. I’ve never been to one before, so that was an eye opener too. People were just throwing Β£50 notes on the table to change into chips then they were all just getting swept away by the croupier when their number didn’t turn up on the roulette wheel. All that money being lost in probably less than a minute πŸ˜±πŸ˜–

Then back to our rented apartment for the night, where I basically had not much sleep at all due to the constant traffic noise I think and my sister noisily cleaning her coat at 5.30 in the morning 😱

Time for a quick visit to the sea during Storm Dennis

Then home.

As usual we had some disasters along the way but there were enjoyable times too πŸ˜€